Disposable gloves are becoming increasing popular in many food industries because they take health and safety one step further. Simple single-use disposable gloves, similar to those used in the medical profession, can help to protect the hands of your employees and also the food of your customers. These gloves are relatively inexpensive, and they can be purchased in bulks to help you save money. When kitchen staff members are required to wear gloves when handling food, the necessity of continually washing hands is eliminated and a great deal of the risk present in the food preparation industry is diminished.
The Importance of High Health Standards
High health standards are essential in the food preparation and food service industries. Customers who visit your restaurant, hire your catering company, or consume the food you eat are trusting that the things they put in their mouths are clean and free of germs or contamination. There have been many scares in the restaurant world lately as outbreaks of salmonella and e coli poisoning seem to become relatively common. For this reason, customers are paying attention to their health and their well-being when selecting a restaurant or caterer. Unless your health standards are up to code, you may find your customer numbers dwindling.
Gloves Protect Workers
Disposable gloves are beneficial in the restaurant or food service industry because they help to protect employees from cross contamination or infection while working in the kitchen. Handling raw food items, especially raw meat, can cause serious health problems. If someone touches infected chicken or pork and then touches his or her eyes, nose, or mouth, the disease in the meat can be transferred to the worker. Wearing gloves, however and disposing of the gloves after food is prepared can eliminate these risks.
Gloves Protect Customers
Disposable gloves also protect the health of customers. When staff members wear gloves during the food preparation process, the risk of transferring germs or contaminants is greatly reduced. Kitchen staff members that wear disposable gloves are less likely to touch their faces or hair before touching food that is being prepared. Therefore, guests are protected from contamination through contact with staff members’ germs.
While many restaurant owners or caterers choose latex gloves for their employees because they are effective and inexpensive, some people have serious latex allergies that should be considered. An allergy to latex can cause the development of a rash, swelling on the hands, or even the development of oozing sores if the individual is exposed for long periods of time. Always ask your staff members if they have an allergy to latex before assigning them gloves made of this material. If a staff member does not know if he or she has a latex allergy, suggesting them to test by rubbing a small amount of the material on the surface of the skin and waiting an hour to see if any adverse reaction develops. If in doubt, choose disposable gloves that are made from hypoallergenic materials. These gloves may be more expensive, but considering the safety of your staff members is always worth the added cost.
Disposable gloves may seem like a hindrance or an annoyance at first to your kitchen staff members. The gloves clunky or awkward feeling, mixed with using knives or other kitchen utensils may take some time adjusting to. However, the health benefits and improved standards of using disposable gloves, overshadows the uncomfortable transition process. Not only will your customers be protected from cross contamination or the spread of germs, but your employees will also be protected while they are working in your restaurant’s kitchen.
Jeff Breeden offers the latest information and resources in commercial cooking and restaurant service at CooksDirect.com.